Darren Till trying to avoid MMA out of respect for UFC

Don't expect Darren Till to join up with any of the UFC's MMA rivals.

By: Nate Wilcox | 1 month ago
Darren Till trying to avoid MMA out of respect for UFC
Darren Till at UFC 282. | Louis Grasse / ZUMA Wire, IMAGO

One-time UFC welterweight title challenger Darren Till left the UFC after 3-straight losses this past March. His departure from the organization came as a surprise because his last bout (a third-round submission to Dricus Du Plessis) won Fight of the Night honors and UFC boss Dana White had said Till’s stock with the promotion “had not dropped at all.”

Darren Till said he asked for his release from the UFC

Till had openly struggled with his morale following a string of injuries that had forced him to pull out of at least one booked fight.

“What’s happening everyone,” tweeted Till. “Me, Dana [and] [UFC Chief Business Officer] Hunter are still cool as f—k. I asked UFC [to] remove me just [to] sort some other s—t out for the foreseeable. They happily agreed to release me out of contract which I appreciate. I’m not going anywhere, got big plans to execute [and] I’ll be back.”

Darren Till avoiding MMA to stay in good graces with UFC

But apparently, Till may be done with MMA (for now) but he’s not done with combat sports. Like everyone else who follows the money, he’s looking to box

In a recent interview with Ariel Helwani on the MMA Hour, Till talked about his relationship with the UFC and why his plans don’t include organizations like the PFL.

“I sort of made a little promise, but not promise,” Till replied, speaking of his relationship with the UFC, and whether he was free to fight in MMA (transcript via MMA Fighting). “I said ‘I don’t want to go off straight away and do MMA. My heads a little battered and I just sort of want to be released and see what me options are.’ That was eight months ago. I’ve had some crazy offers since I left, by big MMA organizations, and I turned them all down. I’ve been in talks with some of them, but again, I wouldn’t go down that disrespectful route of starting straightaway with the PFL.”

“I feel like I’ve done it the right way. … What’s the point of saying to Hunter, ‘I need some time off to relieve the pressure,’ and then go sign with the PFL or Bellator or ONE or something like that? It just makes no sense.”

Darren Till planning to fight Mike Perry on Misfits card

So if MMA is out of the running, what’s Till going to do in the meantime?

In that same interview, Till did reveal what he has in mind for his next move. Notably, the Liverpudlian wants to get his feet wet in the ring sometime in November or December. After that, he’s got his sights firmly set on a longtime frenemy.

“I’m trying to compete now, in November, December,” Till explained of his future plans. “Get a fight, whatever. Just get me toes wet. And then I will be looking for the Perry fight next year. I want to make a big thing of it. That’s it. Let’s see who can grab that up. More than likely, Misfits will want to make that fight, but that fight can be made anywhere, anyhow. It will sell no matter what. I think it will be massive here in the U.K.”

Mike Perry on fighting Till

Mike Perry sounds like he wants the fight too.

In his own recent MMA Hour interview, Perry sounded like he was champing at the bit (transcript via Sportskeeda):

“We just want to fight because I want to punch him for things he said in the past, but he has grown up a lot as well as I have…Yes [I hate him] because of his raw dog comment…Yeah, he said something about raw dogging my bird, my new bird, or whatever, and I wanna scratch his eyes out…I don’t let grudges die.”

Join the new Bloody Elbow

Our Substack is where we feature the work of writers like Zach Arnold, John Nash and Connor Reubusch. We’re fighting for the sport, the fighters and the fans. Please help us by subscribing today.

Share this story

About the author
Nate Wilcox
Nate Wilcox

Nate Wilcox is the founding editor of BloodyElbow.com. As such he has hired every editor and writer to work for the site. Wilcox’s writing for BE is known for its emphasis on MMA history, the evolution of fighting techniques and strong opinions. Wilcox developed the SBN MMA consensus rankings which were featured in USA Today from 2009 to 2011. Before founding BE, Wilcox was a political operative working for such figures as Senators John Kerry and Mark Warner and an early political blogger. He is the co-author of Netroots Rising, a history of the political blogosphere from 2003 to 2007. Wilcox also hosts the Let It Roll podcast on music history for the Pantheon Podcast Network.

More from the author

Bloody Elbow Podcast
Related Stories